Last Tuesday, we loaded up the camper and took off for the 23rd Annual Grassroots Festival of Music and Dance in Trumansburg, New York. The drive takes six hours and for most of it we listened to music on the radio or on my iphone. That evening we swam at the pond, had dinner with my family and sat around a campfire talking and laughing. No TV was watched that day.
The next day we hung out by the pond some more. (It was in the high 90s). And later that day my husband and I went out for an early dinner with my brother and his lovely partner at a restaurant called Stonecat in Hector, NY and off to play nine holes. The night ended, again, by the campfire by the pond. My birthmother’s husband built a pyramid style campfire that night. I began to avoid social media as well. No TV was watched that day.
On Thursday the men in my group (my husband, brother and a friend) biked the three miles into town where our cars were lined up to get into the festival. I got dropped off a few hours later. We were in and set up at the festival by 12:40pm. The next four days were spend by our campsite at the festival, seeing live music at one of the four stages, eating at the vendors, or heading out to the pond for an afternoon cool down. No posts to Facebook. No Tweeting. No TV was watched those four days.
We didn’t read any newspapers. I left my iphone in my camper top drawer merely so I could hear if I got a text from someone local, usually asking if we needed anyone to pick up beer or ice. We saw some great music. My top three include Driftwood, The Mad Tea, who I have loved since first seeing them at the Shakori Hills Grassroots Festival in 2005, and Spam Allstars, who “blend improvisational electronic elements and turntables with latin, funk, hip hop and dub to create what they call an electronic descarga.” I always love seeing one of my favorite bands Donna the Buffalo.
We leisurely packed up the camper on Sunday to make it back to the pond for dinner and a final campfire before we took off on Monday morning.
A week without any media (other than live music) is something more of us should experience. Most of what I write about for this blog is about critiquing what I see on the TV or hear about in the news. I didn’t have much that pissed me off all week except hearing the stories from my family of the Pro-Fracking folks in the area. Perhaps I would be less pissed off if I was less engaged with the media.
As I drank my coffee Tuesday morning and watched a bit of the Today show with my nieces and in-laws, I wanted to throw up. The two big news items were that the Pope’s car had been surrounded by people in Rio, as his driver took a wrong turn, (surrounded by Catholics dying to get a blessing? Oh my God!) and the new baby of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. These two examples were enough to make me want to throw out our TV.
Spend a day or two away from media and see if it changes your perspective a bit.